The Art of Aquatic Cooking

Lotus Tuber
& Chicken Soup
4 persons

By Tuckfook Ng, Penang, Malaysia 

Use the bones from 2 chickens plus necks, liver & gizzard if you like, (keeping the deboned chicken for another dish), 6 bowls of water. and a bulb of garlic (smashed) for those who like the flavour. Simmer together for 45 minutes or more. Remove bones, strain any particles and froth. Add salt and lots of freshly ground black pepper. Add water if not enough for 4 servings.

Use an amount of lotus tuber roughly equivalent to 3 or 4 medium-sized potatoes, (more if you like but you'll need enough soup to cover it). Cut the prepared tuber into bite-sized chunks, put into soup and bring to boil. Simmer and test lotus tuber for doneness. Switch off when desired texture is achieved. Serve piping hot.


Put the tuber into a food processor and dice it roughly. Boil this in the soup for about 30 mins. This variation imparts more of the lotus flavour to the soup.

Chicken or pork can be added before the lotus if meat is desired in the soup.

The Chinese use a preserved vegetable in the soup. The Japanese add Miso to the stock and seaweed flakes for garnish.

Here's a recipe for the deboned chicken.

Chicken in Plum Sauce or Piquant Sauce

Season chicken, 10 heaped Tbs. of ordinary flour and 1 Tbs. sesame seed , with salt & pepper. Dip chicken in egg, then the flour/sesame seed mixture , repeat 3-4 times.

Fry in hot oil, deep or in a pan (lower heat as soon as chicken goes in). Remove and place on paper towel when golden brown and cooked through. Chop neatly into pieces, preserving the shape of the chicken.

Plum sauce: can be straight from the bottle or add 6-10 Tbs of plum sauce to 2 cups chicken stock, bring to boil, add salt & pepper, vinegar and sugar to taste. Add 1 tsp. sesame oil and some browned sesame seed as garnish. Thicken with cornstarch. Use as a dip or pour onto chicken before serving.

Piquant sauce: 2 Tbs. English mustard, 6 Tbs. tomato puree, mix well. Boil 2 cups chicken stock and add mustard and puree. Add Worcestershire sauce, salt, sugar, pepper, vinegar to taste. Thicken with cornstarch. Use as a dip as this sauce can be too strong for some.

Just in case: Thickening is with 2-3 Tbs. corn flour mixed in 1/2 cup water. Slowly add this mixture into simmering sauce until desired thickness.

Lotus Tuber Basics | Lotus Tuber Tempura
Fish & Lotus Tuber Stir Fry
Bean Sprout & Lotus Tuber Stir Fry with Crispy Bacon

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